Purchased car April 2006 with 193k on it from a friend and her family. Rarely was this car ever even maintained.
215,000k the speakers started to crap out so I replaced all four with Sony Xplods.
260,000k belts and tune up.
275,000k set new tires/brakes.
300,000k starting leaking/burning about 2qts of oil per week, didn't effect performance much.
341,000k car totaled by drunk driver.
I bought this car for $1000 for my first car when I was fifteen. I put that poor little through hell and back. Not only did I put 150,000k on that car in two years, but most of that mileage was from delivering pizza in high school and the early part of college. NEVER ever once did that car ever fail to start or leave me stranded anywhere!
It was surely no Supra, but was quick enough, and the gas mileage was unbelievable, about 35-42 mpg! The car was built well, although looked cheap. The 4spd automatic was paired well with the car.
I can't say that it was really a looker, but after adding a rear spoiler, clear front signals, a brushed metal dash kit, new metallic paint-job, and alloys from a 96 Celica, honestly it didn't look bad.
IF and NOT WHEN this car breaks down, most of the repairs can be done yourself with just a Chilton repair manual and a Sunday afternoon. And changing the oil/filter takes 5min flat (minus time to drain).
This car was just so amazing in my eyes that nothing will ever compare. I would still be driving it if it weren't for a drunk driver plowing into a parking lot. My 2001 Elantra with 66k is getting traded in tomorrow... for another Tercel! This one is the base/standard model. Doesn't even have power steering, a passenger mirror, only 2 speakers, 3spd automatic, and not as good-looking as my Elantra... but clearly better. I've had endless problems and headaches with the Elantra, so I'm going back to a basic tranporter.
Although not as nice as my first, my new Tercel will fill the gap. Plus, since it's only got 110k, it'll be like starting out new again.